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Undocumented Student Program

The Undocumented Student Program (USP) provides support services to undocumented students and mixed-status families on our campus.

Announcements

Upcoming Events

About

Mission

The Undocumented Student Program (USP) provides services, resources, and support to undocumented students and mixed-status families. Through advocacy for educational equity and by fostering an inclusive and welcoming campus environment, USP is committed to empowering and celebrating undocumented student resilience.

Vision

Our vision is to build partnerships and relationships with students, staff, faculty, administrators, and community members to better serve undocumented communities. UNLV USP honors and recognizes the hard work of undocumented students and their allies in the continued advocacy for thriving communities and equity in higher education.

Staff

Get Support

Set up an Appointment

Through the role of the Resource Coordinator for the Undocumented Student Program (USP), Mariana Sarmiento supports students by coordinating campus and community resources based on their unique needs and academic goals. Mariana provides support for students who are undocumented, students with DACA and students in mixed-status families. Set up an appointment with Mariana by emailing mariana.sarmiento@unlv.edu or calling 702-895-5658.

How Mariana can help you:

  • Undocumented and DACA student support
  • Basic needs assistance (food/housing)
  • Financial aid and scholarship assistance
  • Case management services
  • Mental health and well-being support
  • And more!

Drop-In Hours

Due to Covid-19 considerations, Mariana is not currently available for drop-in hours.

 

Follow us on Social Media:

Instagram: @uspunlv

Facebook: /USPUNLV

Sign-up for our Newsletter

 

Programming

NSHE Virtual Town Hall on DACA Issues

The Nevada System of Higher Education held a town hall with Chancellor Reilly at 4 p.m., Tuesday, April 28, 2020 to discuss concerns around the uncertainty of the Supreme Court DACA decision and its impacts on immigrant students and staff. The recording and closed captioning are now available.

Roots & Resilience: Healing for Undocumented Communities

The Undocumented Student Program and Student Diversity & Social Justice (SDSJ) hosted a series of healing workshops with information about immigration-related stress, as well as supportive resources and strategies for coping. The recordings and presentation slides are now available.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does undocumented status and DACA mean?

Immigrants Rising defines “undocumented” broadly to include all immigrants who reside in the United States without legal status. They include individuals who:

  1. Entered without Inspection (also known as “EWI”): Individuals who entered the United States without presenting themselves for inspection at an official checkpoint to obtain permission to enter the country (e.g. crossing the border without inspection).
  2. Entered with Legal Status but Overstayed: Individuals who entered the United States with legal status (e.g. student visa) and then remained in the country after their ‘duration of status’ date (found on their I-94) or after their visa expired.
  3. Have or Previously Had Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA): Individuals who have been granted temporary reprieve from deportation through the federal government’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Additionally, individuals who had DACA in the past, or will be eligible to request DACA later if the program is fully reinstated.
  4. Are Currently in the Process of Legalizing: Individuals who are pursuing legalization (e.g. U.S. Citizen Spouse Petition or U-visa pending, etc.) but currently have no legal status.
  5. Vulnerable Immigrants: Individuals whose immigration status is in ‘limbo’ or puts them ‘at-risk’ for being targeted by immigration enforcement. This could occur due to many factors, such as politics (e.g. TPS program at risk of being canceled due to shift in the policy), to U-visa recipients who cannot adjust their status due to personal circumstances (e.g. lack of funds, missing a deadline).

It is also important to note that while all DACA recipients are undocumented, not all undocumented individuals are DACA recipients. Selection is contingent upon meeting criteria and the completion and federal government review of an individual's DACA application. Learn about resources for DACA for first-time applicants.

Can I enroll at UNLV if I’m undocumented or have DACA?

U.S. citizenship is not a requirement for admission to UNLV and we welcome all students who seek education and the opportunities it provides. Therefore, any individual can apply to be a student and, if accepted, enroll for classes.

Please note that a social security number (SSN) is not required to apply to UNLV. If you don’t have a social security number you can write in all zeros (0) instead of an SSN on your application. For assistance with the UNLV application, please contact the UNLV Office of Admissions.

Am I eligible for in state tuition as an undocumented student?

Undocumented and DACA students who have graduated from a Nevada high school are automatically eligible for in-state tuition.

If a student did not graduate from a Nevada high school, they must submit the Nevada Residency Application to be eligible for residency tuition rates. Please contact the Undocumented Student Program for assistance with the application.

What financial assistance is available to me as an undocumented student?

Undocumented and DACA students are not eligible for federal financial aid, but may apply for university-based and alternate financial aid at UNLV, including some scholarships through their college or department. For information on financial aid, visit the Financial Aid website and browse through the resources on the Undocumented Student Program website.

Undocumented and DACA students are encouraged to submit the Alternate Need Determination Form, which serves as an alternate form for students who are not eligible for FAFSA. DACA students may still submit the FAFSA if that is required for a specific scholarship or program, but they will not receive federal aid.

Where can I find the latest information about the status of DACA?

he University Legal Services at the UNLV Immigration Clinic offers free legal advice and representation to UNLV and CSN students, staff, and their family members. Visit them online to schedule an intake appointment or call 702-895-2070.

Follow the UNLV Immigration Clinic and the Undocumented Student Program (USP) on Facebook & Instagram for immigration updates, scholarships, and other helpful resources.
  • UNLV Immigration Clinic: @unlvimmigration
  • Undocumented Student Program: @uspunlv

As an individual with DACA status and a UNLV employee, can I continue to work at UNLV if DACA ends?

If the DACA program ends, this does not necessarily mean that your employer will automatically terminate you. However, if your employment authorization expires, it is a violation of federal law for an employer to continue to employ you after your work authorization expires. Despite this, you still have rights in the workplace. For more information, please follow the link: Workers’ Rights.

Can I work on campus if I am undocumented?

If you are a DACA recipient you can work on campus under funding that is not federal. Most work-study positions require you to fill out the FAFSA and are federally funded, so DACA recipients do not qualify for those. Although, undocumented students who do not have a work permit or social security number do not qualify to work on campus, there are other opportunities that they do qualify for. Undocumented students qualify for stipends.

For more information on how undocumented students can make money visit Immigrants rising and learn about how undocumented folks in the community are creating their own opportunities.

If I experience discrimination while at UNLV, where can I get help?

Undocumented students (with and without DACA) are important members of our campus community. If you are facing discrimination, you might be feeling a range of emotions, including anger, sadness, and other feelings. The Undocumented Student Program is here to support you, help identify your rights, and provide assistance for next steps that you may want to take. Please contact us for individualized assistance. Undocumented students and staff can also visit The Office of Equal Employment and Title IX to learn more about how title IX protects students against discrimination.

As a DACA student, can I travel outside of the U.S. and/or participate in study abroad?

Students who are DACA recipients have the option of applying for Advance Parole, which allows them to leave the country and return legally for humanitarian, work, or education related matters. It is highly recommended that individuals interested in applying for Advance Parole work seek assistance from an immigration attorney, as there are risks involved in leaving the country as an undocumented person. Find a reputable immigration attorney through the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) lawyer search.

The International Programs office provides information about studying abroad and studying within the country. The National Student Exchange (NSE) is a program for exchange within the United States and Canada.

What information can the University disclose about student records, including class schedules?

A student’s education record is protected under the Family Education Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA). Any record that directly relates to a student and is maintained by the institution or a party acting on behalf of the institution is considered an education record. UNLV complies with federal and state law with respect to disclosure of a student’s education record to outside parties.

UNLV maintains "directory" information for students, including name, class level, major, email, address, and telephone numbers. Individuals and external organizations may request this information, but the university carefully reviews and considers each request, and not all requests are fulfilled. FERPA does not prohibit disclosure of directory information. Learn more about UNLV's definition of directory information​.

Because U.S. citizenship is not a requirement of admission, UNLV does not track undocumented or DACA status of its students.

Can a student opt out of having their directory information disclosed?

Yes, however the student also will no longer receive official and other important correspondence from UNLV. If a student does not want UNLV to disclose any or all of their directory information without prior written consent, the student must request this through their MyUNLV account. Learn more about FERPA.

As a UNLV faculty or staff member, what should I do if law enforcement officers are in my office or classroom?

Please contact the UNLV Office of General Counsel during business hours at 702-895-5185 for immediate assistance in any situation in which a law enforcement officer requests personal or personally identifiable information or records relating to a student. If not during normal business hours, contact University Police Services at 702-895-3668.

You may ask the law enforcement officer for their name, identification number, and agency affiliation, and also for a copy of any warrant or subpoena presented. Inform the officer that you are not obstructing their process, but following standard university practice and must contact the appropriate UNLV office for assistance.

Historically, external law enforcement agencies have notified University Police Services in advance of arriving on campus to execute a warrant or subpoena.

Campus Resources

Academic Advising

Advisors are resources who serve as guides through academic choices, policies, and requirements. During the advising session, students will discuss upcoming courses and degree requirements based on their current coursework, their commitments outside of UNLV, and their intended educational goals. The advisor may make recommendations, but the ultimate decision rests with the student. Advisors are excited to discuss goals and look forward to meeting with students.

Find your Academic Advisor

Financial Assistance

UNLV offers institutional grants and scholarship opportunities based on merit or financial need for students who do not have the opportunity to apply for Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Additionally, non-FAFSA eligible students can apply for private scholarships. For additional financial assistance or resources, please contact the Undocumented Student Program.

Health & Wellness

Students are eligible for access to services and programming at the Student Wellness Center regardless of immigration status. For additional health and wellness services, contact the Undocumented Student Program.

  • Student Health Center
    The UNLV Student Health Center is an accredited facility by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC). Our board-certified clinicians and health care team are dedicated to helping you prevent injury, treat illness, and reduce the risk of acute and chronic disease.
  • Jean Nidetch CARE Center
    The Jean Nidetch CARE Center provides free and confidential support services to members of the UNLV community who have been impacted by sexual assault, relationship abuse, family violence and/or stalking. Programs and services are available to people of all identities and regardless of status.
  • Student Counseling and Psychological Services
    Student Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) can help you manage your feelings so that you can make the most out of your college experience. Our clinicians are trained to help you work through problems commonly experienced by college students of all ages and backgrounds.
  • The Practice
    The PRACTICE is a dynamic community mental health clinic located on UNLV’s main campus offering mental and behavioral health services.
  • Center for Individual, Couple, and Family Counseling
    The Center for Individual, Couple & Family Counseling is a mental health facility that provides quality, low-cost therapy to residents of the Las Vegas community.
  • UNLV Food Pantry
    The year-round UNLV Food Pantry provides non-perishable items to university students, staff, and faculty who need additional food.

Legal Assistance

The UNLV Immigration Clinic is now offering free of charge legal advice and representation to UNLV and CSN students, staff, and their family members. Call 702-895-2080 for more information or fill out their intake form to make an appointment. University Legal Services offers assistance with:

  • DACA forms and renewals
  • Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Requests
  • Screening for immigration relief
  • And more!

Social Support & Additional Resources

  • The Intersection
    We are a one-stop resource for UNLV’s highly diverse student body — a comprehensive multicultural center grounded in the academic life of our students. As an intersecting campus resource, we help ensure students, particularly first-generation and students of color, successfully navigate their academic careers
  • Student Diversity & Social Justice
    Student Diversity & Social Justice advocates with a diverse student population to amplify and affirm student’s identities through an intersectional framework to promote student success. We are a student-centered office committed to educating, empowering, and developing UNLV students as leaders to recognize and address societal injustices.
  • UNLV Library Guide: Resources for Undocumented/DACAmented Students
  • UndocuNetwork
    The UNLV UndocuNetwork is Registered Student Organization dedicated to empowering undocumented and immigrant communities. For updates, find them on Facebook.com/Undocunetwork.

Scholarships

For scholarship assistance or information, please set up an appointment with the USP Resource Coordinator, Mariana Sarmiento at mariana.sarmiento@unlv.edu or call 702-895-5658.

Undocumented Student Scholarship: CSUN and the Undocumented Student Program (USP) have teamed up to provide financial assistance to undocumented undergraduate students who are overcoming systemic barriers in achieving higher education. This scholarship will be awarded to four (4) students at $2,000 each, which will be dispersed over two academic semesters. The deadline for the 2021-2022 scholarship application is April 4, 2021 at 11:59pm.

Information for Faculty/Staff

All Access Taskforce

The All Access Taskforce (AAT) is composed of students, faculty and staff who are committed to building a comprehensive support system for campus community members who are undocumented or who receive Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), as well those who identify as immigrants and are from mixed-status families. To learn more about the AAT, please email Mariana Sarmiento at mariana.sarmiento@unlv.edu.

The AAT advises and supports efforts to:

  • Recruit and retain undocumented students and staff/faculty
  • Collaborate to create solutions and increase campus accessibility for the undocumented community through advocacy, policy changes, programming, and other solutions
  • Implement practical, research-informed, and systemic policies to provide tangible resources and on-campus support for undocumented folk

Syllabus Statement

The following undocumented student support syllabus statement may be modified and included on your syllabi:
Undocumented Student Support

Immigration is a complex phenomenon with broad impact—those who are directly affected by it, as well as those who are indirectly affected by their relationships with family members, friends, and loved ones. If your immigration status presents obstacles to engaging in specific activities or fulfilling specific course criteria, please request support from the Unocumented Student Program (USP). The Undocumented Student Program offers support services and coordinates resource access for undocumented students (with and without DACA) as well as students from mixed-status families. To learn more, visit the Diversity website.

Adapted from The University of Utah Dream Center.

UndocuAlly Training

The Undocumented Student Program (USP) is proud to to host UndocuAlly Training for faculty, staff, and administration in order to encourage the development of a safe and welcoming campus for undocumented students.

Register as an Individual
  • UndocuAlly Training 101: Friday, March 5th from 10 am - 12 pm.
    • This training aims to increase faculty and staff knowledge about policies and language related to immigration, including myths & misconceptions about undocumented students.
  • UndocuAlly Training 102: Saturday, March 12th from 10 am - 12 pm
    • This training aims to increase faculty and staff knowledge about the unique needs of undocumented communities, as well as strategies and resources for supporting undocumented students.

Register Today

Request an UndocuAlly Workshop

To learn more about UndocuAlly Training or to request a training for your office or department, please email Mariana Sarmiento at mariana.sarmiento@unlv.edu.

External Resources

The following organizations and websites are provided for information and resource purposes. The links provided on this web page are not under the direct or indirect control of UNLV and are provided as a convenience to you. By clicking on any such hyperlink, you will be leaving the UNLV website.